Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Three More Days...

Three more days and my business plan will be submitted to the selection committee, and hopefully  they'll accept my plan as well thought out, and what not, and I'll be able to continue on their financial assistance program, as well as still getting free business courses <fingers crossed>. It's been a tough few months, but I'm hoping that all my hard work will pay off. If by some chance I don't get accepted to continue in the program, I'll have to find a job in order to pay my bills. I know that won't happen.

I also wanted to share some really yummy felt desserts I found on Etsy last night. They're so exquisitely made, and look just like the real thing! They're all made by Huong Huynh, and her shop is called Milkfly.

Waffle Cone Ice Cream Scoop by Milkfly

Lemon Meringue Pie by Milkfly

I've never had one of these (these aren't sold in Canada as far as I'm concerned), but I've seen them in a movie that was filmed in the U.S.

Sno Ball Snack Cake by Milkfly

Just looking at these felt treats makes me hungry. They're so amazing! :)

Monday, February 20, 2012

Guest Post from Pwark!

Most people wrongly believe that I am the creator of PWARK! In fact, one day, when I was about to rearrange my apartment, I heard strange sounds coming from my living room. After a few minutes to look for where the sound was coming, I looked under the couch and I saw this creature who was both charming and attractive that seemed lost. By reaching out to try to reach it, she curled up on itself into a corner and seemed scared. So it was then that I had the bright idea to lure it with food to get her out of hiding. In presenting candy, she approached me. Having tasted one, she came out to ask me more. After getting satisfied, the charming little creature tried to explain her presence, but it was incomprehensible, I heard only grunts. So she took a paper and pencil and started to draw. With the help of his drawings and her gestures, I knew she had a mission with a few others to pick up objects that we humans see as waste, but which are raw materials for this civilization.

I realized that these creatures live in a side-world and they access to our world with the help of garden gnomes. The garden gnomes are agents sent by PWARK! to detect potential homes to contain more raw materials for this distant civilization. These gnomes that are presented in the form of statues are on a mission. Having noticed that my garden gnome, named Arold, seemed to have changed places a few times during the few days before my meeting with a PWARK!, all the things that I found strange now had a  sense. So it was then that I decided to help PWARK! in their quest for materials, which are usually old clothes. My home is wide-open for them and serves as their headquarters. They are wandering left and right to go about their business.

This is a great pleasure for me to contribute to the survival of such charming creatures. You can help too! Simply open your door to one of these charming creatures. Once established in your house, it will bring you many things and who knows, maybe she will share her knowledge with you ...

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Little Dolls Are Taking Over!

There are so many dolls and plushies that I love on Etsy, and I've decided to dedicate today's blog to talking about them! They inspire me to strive to create new monster collections, because they're just so awesome. So let's get right down to it, and check these awesome dolls out!

First off, we have The Art and Craft of Mimi Kirchner. She makes these exquisite dolls with the loveliest details! I took a gander at her website and she averages about 110 dolls a year, which works out to about 3 days work per doll, and her prices reflect this amazing work. Everything on this fox is hand made, even the shoulder bag! It's so awesome. This exact one isn't for sale on Etsy, but there's a similar one, with a different jacket. He goes for $150.

back to a professor fox by Mimi Kirchner

back to a professor fox by Mimi Kirchner

back to a professor fox by Mimi Kirchner

I also really enjoy Mimi's Tattooed Man. The body is made from over-dyed toile fabric that she over dyed to make it look like tattooed skin. The beard is hand stitched, and the details on the face are hand embroidered. Just lovely. This tattooed man IS available to purchase on Etsy, and is $250. I'm imagining the amount of work that goes into dyeing a piece of fabric, and hand stitching alone is a job in itself.

Tattooed man with beard by Mimi Kirchner

Tattooed man with beard by Mimi Kirchner

Tattooed man with beard by Mimi Kirchner

Next we have a small artisan who lives out in Portland, Oregon. She makes these cute plush cats and dogs out of felted, upcycled sweaters. I bought the one I'm about to show you for my Christmas gift, and when I got her, I was so excited I brought her everywhere to show everyone! She's even got little furries on her face. She's a very happy plush cat. The shop is Sweet Poppy Cat. A plush cat like this ranges between $26 and $30.

Cat Stuffed Animal Dark Pink Wool Angora Upcycled Sweater by Sweet Poppy Cat

Cat Stuffed Animal Dark Pink Wool Angora Upcycled Sweater by Sweet Poppy Cat

Cat Stuffed Animal Dark Pink Wool Angora Upcycled Sweater by Sweet Poppy Cat

She also makes these really cute monsters! :) My favorite part!? The noses! I'm not entirely sure how she does that, but I love it!!! The colourful eyes are rocking it too. These monsters cost $50. They're most definitely bigger than the cats and dogs. One day I might have to adopt one. :)

Monster Stuffed Animal Striped Wool Sweater Upcycled Recycled Repurposed by Sweet Poppy Cat

Monster Stuffed Animal Striped Wool Sweater Upcycled Recycled Repurposed by Sweet Poppy Cat

Monster Stuffed Animal Striped Wool Sweater Upcycled Recycled Repurposed by Sweet Poppy Cat

I just can't resist a beautifully made doll. Can you?? :)

Happy window shopping!!

Tuesday, February 07, 2012

Big Cartel and Me

I've been on the fence about opening a new shop besides Etsy. I love what Etsy provides, and the teams, treasuries as well as seeing what items other people like. But a good part of me thinks it'd be time to start moving away from Etsy, and having my own shop. I'm going to keep Etsy live until my real shop starts picking up.

I won't be changing the URL of this blog any time soon, but if I do, don't worry! I will be writing a very special blog post telling everyone the new URL, and how to change your subscription. Or, I'll just redirect the blog manually through Blogger, and no one will be the wiser. But this isn't going to happen for at least 4-6 months, so you can all relax!

As for the new shop, I've chosen Big Cartel. They are a hosted website that allow the user to redesign the site according to their specifications, truly making it into a store that's unique to you. I only have the Gold membership which is free, and it only allows me 5 items.

Here's a screenshot of my shop on Big Cartel:

What do you think? I haven't made many modifications so far, because CSS (cascading style sheets) is not something I learned in Graphic Design school, nor have I ever tried to learn in the 8 years I've been out of school. Let's just say I did my best. I did figure out how to change all the grey bars to white, at least clean it up a bit. I'd really like to add a background image, like the one on my blog, but I honestly have no idea how to do so in CSS. I'll be making changes slowly as I go along.

My shop is also available as a link through Facebook too!

Facebook - Big Cartel Link to Shop

I think it's essential there's a link in Facebook, because it gives my followers a chance to buy one of my very cute monsters without having to create a profile on Etsy. That's another bonus about Big Cartel that I like that I don't like about Etsy. No need to create a profile on Big Cartel. It's like a website. You just go to it, click on the image, and pay with PayPal. Easy peasy! Well, Big Cartel has a lot of benefits... no listing fees, no fees on purchases made by customers, and there's only one bill at the end of the month, and it's always the same. PayPal fees are still in effect, but that's okay.

If anyone out there understands CSS, and can tell me how I can add a background, please, leave me a comment!

Have a great night!

Saturday, February 04, 2012

Saturday Flurry

Saturday was supposed to be a day of boring work. I really had intentions of working on my financial forecasting for my business plan, but the idea of cleaning my apartment took precedence. I live in an almost 700 square foot apt with my 2 kitties, and you'd think that would be more than plenty of place for just little ol' me, right? Well, my recent acquisition of polyester fiberfill has resulted in my sudden claustrophobia. I only bought 2 bags of stuffing, but after cutting the first bag to let the air in so I could actually use the stuff created it to expand to twice its size! It's a good thing I placed the bundle in a printer box first, because I think otherwise I'd never get it through the doors. Each bag is 16.6 kg (or about 37 pounds). The bag above the box expanded to about 4 feet wide, and the bag itself is about 4.5 feet high.

The lime green box on the bottom left is a box of cat litter, so you can imagine the size of my stuffing bundles. The one on the right in the blue bag is vacuum packed. If I were to cut the bag off, the inside bag would expand to fill the rest of the room.

So I spent the entire afternoon cleaning my apt to get this stuff in the spare room, shown above. I had to clean out my outdoor locker to store my bikes (and keep them from rusting in the snow, or getting stolen), because they were originally in this room. After 5 whole hours, my house was finally tidy, and I could breathe.

On Thursday I sold this really great monster, shown below: 

This is the guy I sold on Thursday. His arms and legs were made out of an upcycled bathing suit belt I found. Probably the coolest fabric colours ever, and impossible to find.

I loved this guy so much, I spent all of Friday on a quest to find rainbow striped fabric. Either like the photo above, or with alternating white strips, it didn't matter as long as it was a rainbow. You'd think that someone would carry it, but not one fabric store carries rainbow stripes. However, near the end of Friday evening, I did come across some rainbow striped fleece at Fabricland (total fluke!), so I bought the whole bolt. It doesn't have the white or the black in between the colours, but it's a rainbow, and the only one I've found so far. The whole bolt left me with over 4 meters of fabric for $27. Lucky for me it was on sale!

Here's the new monster with rainbow arms and legs.

He's still a bit of a skeleton, only in pieces, not put together yet.

His legs! They're 18 inches long. Even my nail polish matches a bit.

He wanted to be photographed in the snow bank, so how could I say no? This is what he'll look like when assembled, but with less dimension.

What makes both of these monsters really cool, is that their limbs are pose-able. I added 'joints' in the arms and legs, so they can have a bit more personality.

So there you have it. My Saturday flurry involved a LOT of cleaning, and tiny photography break.